8vo, pp. 207; some off-setting to title; contemporary ownership note to title dated Manila 1954; uncut in the original illustrated wrappers by Manuel Benet and Manuel Mampaso, spine worn and chipped at foot, front hinge cracking.
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First edition of this important work by the Nobel prize-winning poet.
‘Aleixandre is one of the few poets of this century who managed to rise and find something above the emptiness. The shift was fairly dramatic. It came with The Story of the Heart (1954). Aleixandre does not lose his gloominess in this book, but despair becomes only one of the tones his voice can take, a part of the register, not the whole song. The bulk of the book affirms human fellowship, a spiritual unity, friendliness. He has written that it “was begun as a work of love in the strict sense”. From there it opens outward to a world of people. It makes his early books seem almost reticent’ (Lewis Hyde, in the introduction to A Longing for the light, selected poems of Vicente Aleixandre, 1979).
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